Not all wheelchairs are equal in function and purpose. A wheelchair user’s clinical team is responsible for aligning the user’s needs with appropriate equipment to promote maximum independence and minimize impairments. To do this properly, it’s important to understand Medicare coding of the various classifications of manual wheelchairs.
Nearly all manual wheelchair codes (K0001 – K0004) cover depot or lightweight chairs. These types of chairs are the preferred solution of most insurance providers because they are the most cost effective.
Only ultra lightweight manual wheelchairs fall under code K0005. While chairs in this classification meet RESNA’s standards for stability, dimensions and expected life, they require more explicit and extensive justification for approvals. On the flip side, they have wide-ranging health benefits.
Alexis Miller, OTR, is a former occupational therapist and currently an ATP with Numotion. She believes the documentation is worth it for her patients.
“Considering the impact of pain on independence and quality of life, it is imperative to be fully informed of the benefits of the prescription of ultra lightweight manual wheelchairs,” shared Miller.
Read more by downloading the White Paper from Alexis about the benefits of chairs